Zach and I met in line at a late night taco stand in Santa Monica, California. So it was only fitting that part of our wedding took place in a Mexican restaurant called Mariasol. The best part about that is that the restaurant is located at the end of the Santa Monica Pier! It was such a fun spot and we were very excited to share it with our friends and family, many of whom had never been to California before.

Walking down the pier together  towards our ceremony was a journey I’ll never forget. We felt like rock stars! So many people were shouting congratulations at us and taking our picture.

Santa Monica Pier sign

Family Portrait in Palisades Park




Where's Waldo


The ceremony took place in the pier’s public observation deck, which is surrounded by gorgeous views of the Pacific Ocean and the Santa Monica Mountains.  As a nod to my Spanish-born mother, we had a flamenco guitarist perform the ceremony music and we also incorporated a traditional Spanish coin ceremony using coins from her wedding to my father.

Originally, we planned on keeping everything very simple and not having a bridal party. But in the end, we chose to honor our older brothers by making them Man of Honor and Best Man, respectively.

Ceremony chairs

Spanish Guitarist - Stephen Dick

Spanish Guitarist – Stephen Dick

Down the aisle

Zach ceremony


Shoes – Badgley Mischka ‘Hyde’ purchased from Shoecrush.

First kiss

Ceremony venue – Public Observation Deck, Santa Monica Pier


After the ceremony, our guests moved into the dining room (which is connected to the observation deck in an L shape) for cocktail hour while we roamed the pier to take pictures. Zach won a stuffed animal for me at one of the carnival games and we got some shots on the ferris wheel.

Stairs at Mariasol


Walking the Pier

Dress – Michelle Roth Maya (I actually got to meet Henry Roth at a trunk show at Here Comes the Bride in San Diego, where I had gone specifically to hunt down this dress!! He was an absolute doll.)

Ferris wheel line

On the Ferris Wheel

Helping Me Down

We could have spent all evening out there taking pictures but we didn’t want to miss too much of the party! The food and music were great. Our older brothers delivered some very funny and heartfelt speeches. Zach and I toasted using the champagne goblets from my parents’ wedding. We had our first dance (The Greenehornes “Hold Me”), we ate our delicious cupcakes, and everybody danced.

The Room

Cupcake Tower

Cupcake tower – Hotcakes Bakes, Culver City, CA

B&W Champagne Goblet

First dance

Dance floor

One of my favorite memories of the evening came courtesy of Zach’s childhood friends from North Carolina. They have a tradition at every friend’s wedding of picking out a song and serenading the bride. For me, they chose Michael Jackson’s “The Way You Make Me Feel.” It was an amazing moment and everybody got a big kick out of it.


We didn’t have a huge budget but so many people pitched in to help it all come together.  One friend did all our flowers, her cousin married us, another friend was our DJ, my best friend’s little sister did my hair and makeup. All of these contributions helped make our wedding so fun and the warmth and love surrounding us the entire weekend was indescribable.


Reception venue – Mariasol restaurant

Ferris wheel at night

Ms Polka Dot says – Such a joyful wedding for you today, where the bride and groom’s happiness shines out from every photo. Love the bride and groom being out on the pier and all the colour and life surrounding them on their special day! Congratulations Zach and Theresa on your marriage!

Theresa says: I am a loyal Polka Dot Bride reader all the way over in Los Angeles, CA (well….we love that Theresa!!)

Photography – Patrick Chai and Christiane Ingenthron of Patrick Chai Photography

In addition to Patrick & Christiane, we were extremely lucky that three of our guests are also extremely talented photographers in their own right. Some of the images you see here came from their cameras. (Credit to my older brother, Brian Solis, and my friends Mick West and Ben Stragnell.)